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Cronulla will look to hop off the roller-coaster that has seen them alternate wins and losses for the past month and string a few victories together in a bid to consolidate their place in the top eight.

This match has been transferred from a 4.05pm kick-off on Saturday at Redcliffe to 8.05pm on Monday at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane due to the revised round 20 draw brought about by Queensland's snap lockdown.

They sit one place and three wins below Manly, their opponents this week, but even more than the six-point gap on the table the gulf between the two sides is illustrated by the almost 200-point advantage the Sea Eagles hold in for-and-against - plus 151 to minus 40.  

Interim coach Josh Hannay has emphasised the need to stay focused with the Sharks developing a habit of clocking off once they have built a substantial mid-game lead - though he would be delighted to deliver a half-time warning to that effect if they happen to get the jump on the Sea Eagles.

His opposite number Des Hasler has far fewer things to worry about, pledging post-match to undertake the fine-tuning required to address glitches exposed in Manly's 20-point win over Wests Tigers as the Sea Eagles strive to keep closing the gap on fourth-placed Parramatta.

The rundown

Team news

Sharks: Cronulla have been granted an exemption to replace Jesse Ramien due to an ear infection. Siosifa Talakai will switch to the centres, bench forward Jack Williams has been elevated to start in the second row with Luke Metcalf the new face on the interchange.

Bill Magoulias is the 18th man and Joaniah Lualua was the last man cut an hour before kick-off.

Matt Moylan, who was initially named among the reserves, won't make his return from a calf injury.

Veteran prop Aiden Tolman is back from suspension, triggering a pack reshuffle that sees Toby Rudolf return to lock.

The Sharks were dealt a blow losing Shaun Johnson for the season with his hamstring tear.

The Sharks have not defeated the Sea Eagles in consecutive games since 2004.

Sea Eagles: In a late switch an hour before kick-off Toafofoa Sipley comes into the starting side and Taniela Paseka reverts to the bench.

Dylan Walker and Lachlan Croker have passed the concussion protocols and both will play.

Curtis Sironen (knee) got through a week's worth of conditioning training last week and has been included on the bench. Karl Lawton (back) will play after missing last week.

Cade Cust and Jack Gosiewski were dropped from the squad when it was reduced to 19 players 24 hours out from the new kick-off time. Kurt De Luis was the last man cut an hour before kick-off and Moses Suli is 18th man.

Team Lists

Backs

  • Fullback for Sharks is number 1 William Kennedy
    Fullback for Sea Eagles is number 1 Tom Trbojevic
  • Winger for Sharks is number 2 Sione Katoa
    Winger for Sea Eagles is number 2 Jason Saab
  • Centre for Sharks is number 3 Will Chambers
    Centre for Sea Eagles is number 3 Brad Parker
  • Centre for Sharks is number 12 Siosifa Talakai
    Centre for Sea Eagles is number 4 Morgan Harper
  • Winger for Sharks is number 5 Ronaldo Mulitalo
    Winger for Sea Eagles is number 5 Reuben Garrick
  • Five-Eighth for Sharks is number 6 Connor Tracey
    Five-Eighth for Sea Eagles is number 6 Kieran Foran
  • Halfback for Sharks is number 7 Braydon Trindall
    Halfback for Sea Eagles is number 7 Daly Cherry-Evans

Forwards

  • Prop for Sharks is number 8 Aiden Tolman
    Prop for Sea Eagles is number 10 Martin Taupau
  • Hooker for Sharks is number 9 Blayke Brailey
    Hooker for Sea Eagles is number 9 Lachlan Croker
  • Prop for Sharks is number 10 Aaron Woods
    Prop for Sea Eagles is number 17 Toafofoa Sipley
  • 2nd Row for Sharks is number 11 Briton Nikora
    2nd Row for Sea Eagles is number 11 Haumole Olakau'atu
  • 2nd Row for Sharks is number 16 Jack Williams
    2nd Row for Sea Eagles is number 12 Josh Schuster
  • Lock for Sharks is number 13 Toby Rudolf
    Lock for Sea Eagles is number 13 Jake Trbojevic

Interchange

  • Interchange for Sharks is number 14 Braden Hamlin-Uele
    Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 8 Taniela Paseka
  • Interchange for Sharks is number 15 Royce Hunt
    Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 14 Dylan Walker
  • Interchange for Sharks is number 17 Andrew Fifita
    Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 15 Karl Lawton
  • Interchange for Sharks is number 19 Luke Metcalf
    Interchange for Sea Eagles is number 16 Curtis Sironen

Reserves

  • Reserve for Sharks is number 20 Billy Magoulias
    Reserve for Sea Eagles is number 18 Moses Suli

Match Officials

  • Referee: Gerard Sutton
  • Touch Judge: Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski
  • Touch Judge: Peter Gough
  • Senior Review Official: Chris Butler

Last updated:

Key match-up

Braydon Trindall v Daly Cherry-Evans: The young playmaker, who had already inherited the goal-kicking duties from Johnson, must step up in the likely absence of the veteran Kiwi and try to go toe-to-toe with one of the competition's form No.7s.

As befits their relative statuses in the game, Cherry-Evans holds a heavy statistical advantage in any category you care to name - seven tries to one, 350 average kick metres to 51, 17 try assists to three, 13 line-break assists to four and 21 offloads to three. It is a daunting assignment for the young Shark.

Stat attack

Manly had just 46 per cent of possession in their win over Wests Tigers in round 18. That didn't stop them from making twice as many tackle breaks and almost 100 extra post-contact metres. Four tries in each half was the result.

 

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